To Fly or Not to Fly? That is the Question.

Let’s face it. We’re all sick and tired of COVID-19 and just want it to go away as soon as possible. Sadly, that isn’t a choice that any of us have, so we have to continue to live with COVID fatigue for at least the next few months. Over the course of most of 2020 we’ve all chosen how to deal with this deadly virus, from completely isolating at home to play it completely safe, to ignoring science and its experts by refusing to follow the basic guidelines of wash your hands frequently, socially distance and wear a mask to help slow the spread.

The hospitality industry is probably the hardest hit economic sector due to COVID-19. Whether it be hotels, restaurants, rental car companies or airlines, they are all in the midst of a struggle for survival, and many have already gone out of business. With the U.S. being the hardest hit country in the world by the pandemic, it has a more difficult situation to dig out of than other parts of the world.

The Thanksgiving weekend holiday has shown just how far Americans will go when it comes to travel during the strongest virus surge we’ve experienced. More than one million travelers passed through TSA checkpoints on multiple days this week, ignoring all pleas by the CDC, President-elect Biden and media medical experts not to travel. This will surely lead to another surge in the next 2-3 weeks, the largest one yet with millions of infections and tens of thousands of deaths predicted.

I’ll be honest and admit that I flew from Minneapolis-St. Paul to Louisville in late October, but my intention was an honorable one. I wasn’t taking a vacation, but visiting a close family member who is in hospice care with a terminal illness. She is still with us as I write this, and I will be returning for what will certainly be a final visit in early December. I felt totally comfortable and safe at MSP Airport, Louisville’s airport and inflight with a mask mandate in place, and expect the same to be the case in a couple of weeks.

While it’s the end of November with moderate temperatures, winter will arrive in Minnesota before much longer. What are your plans? Will you forego a 2021 winter getaway altogether, or plan a vacation hoping that the almost ready vaccines are available sooner rather than later? Or, will you plan a vacation irregardless of vaccine availability?

I flew with Delta in October knowing that there would be an empty seat next to me. I also know this will be the case again in December, as Delta has committed through March 30 to block seats on all flights for social distancing purposes. However, I am well aware that no matter what the airlines want me to believe, I am increasing my risk of contracting COVID-19 by traveling, as well as putting others are risk along the way. I will quarantine for 10-14 days when I return as I did last time as it’s the right thing to do, but we all know that not a lot of people will do the same.

Published by iFlyMSP

After a 35-year travel industry career, the time has come to kick back and relax. Well, not exactly, but it is time to travel without a business schedule dictating where and when. Over the years I've traveled extensively by air for work, both domestically and internationally. I've been to some incredibly exciting and beautiful destinations, and some others, not so much. So now it's my turn (and hopefully yours), to explore the world at a more leisurely pace. Whether you want to discover the U.S. or another continent, the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport is a great starting point. And that's what this blog is all about. I'm not here to assist the rich and famous in figuring out how to best earn and utilize their millions of airline miles and hotel points. Instead, my focus will be on the average Joe and Josephine. Hard-working people (like you!) who have saved up over time for their once or twice a year escape from reality. So if you're contemplating a getaway from MSP or the Upper Midwest via the Twin Cities, you've come to the right place. Happy trails!

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